French painter. A pupil of Simon Julien in Toulon, he was then taught by Pierre-Paul Prud hon in Paris. He exhibited at every Salon between 1793 and 1827, obtaining a second class medal in 1812 and a first class medal in 1817. He executed very few portraits (Chnier, Carcassonne, Muse des Beaux-Arts, is an exception), preferring to paint nymphs bathing and graceful classical nudes such as the Graces Playing with Cupid (Arras, Abbaye St Vaast, Muse des Beaux-Arts). He established his reputation with gouache genre scenes of fashionable and often libertine subjects, always elegant and refined, in the style of Louis-Philibert Debucourt and Louis-Lopold Boilly,
and remarkable for the delicacy and brilliance of their brushwork: for example At the Laundry Maid s and the Painful Letter (both Paris, Muse Cognacq-Jay). They reveal a knowledge of 17th-century Dutch painting in the treatment of details (transparent crystal, reflections on silk or satin) as well as the choice of themes: Military Gallant (Paris, Muse Cognacq-Jay).
Mallet s meticulously precise paintings are one of the best records of fashionable French furnishings and interiors at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. They were very popular and widely disseminated in prints.
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